LOS ANGELES - The holiday shopping season is always a critical time for retailers, but the economic crisis created by the pandemic has made this year a make-it or break-it moment for many store-especially small businesses.
Kip’s Toyland at the Original Farmers Market was supposed to have a celebration marking 75 years in business this October. Instead, the oldest toy store in Los Angeles is struggling to survive.
The family-owned business opened at The Original Farmers Market on Third Street and Fairfax Avenue in 1945. Irvin "Kip" Kipper was a WWII Prisoner of War who wanted to bring happiness to customers during such a difficult time.
The store focuses on classic, nostalgic toys that have stood the test of time, including Slinky’s, Legos, board games, the etch-a-sketch and Barbie Dolls. Surprisingly, none of the products they carry need to be plugged-in as they do not sell gadgets or high-tech items.
With fewer tourists at the Original Farmers Marker, the store is now depending on its loyal customers to stay afloat. For the first time, it is selling its toys online.
You can find them at www.kipstoyland.com.